Make of this what you will
Make of this what you will
“They take the limo, because there are some occasions for which a minivan is not appropriate.”
-Crooked Arrows Flown True (by Ionaperidot)
“It’s not fair. He’s the one that took Bruce away from them, and he’s the only one who gets to have him back.”
-Crooked Arrows Flown True (by Ionaperidot)
Chapter 2: Whoops, I guess there’s three chapters now 😬
Cullen finished his final sweep of the king’s rooms and stepped back into the hall where His Majesty waited, staring blankly at a spot on the floor while idly scratching his mabari between the ears.
He’d been out sick from lyrium withdrawal the whole previous week, and today was his first day back. So he paused a moment to take in the sight before him. His Majesty, as was usual by the end of the day, had removed his suit jacket, which he’d slung over his shoulder, letting it hang from only his index finger. And because he hated wearing suits that much, he’d also loosened his tie and top shirt button and rolled his sleeves up to his elbows. Cullen had to admit the look suited the king more than the proper tie and jacket he always wore for official business, and somehow the king always seemed more comfortable, more natural, more himself when he could relax his wardrobe in this way.
A familiar warmth spread in Cullen’s chest; if he were honest with himself, he’d missed His Majesty.
“It’s easier to talk to Dick when he can’t see him. Still hard, though. It’s better when Dick steers the conversation away from Tim, and starts telling him what he, Cass, and Jason have been doing. It’s easy to listen—Dick’s always been good at filling the silence.”
-Crooked Arrows Flown True (by Ionaperidot)
The secret is out, whether they’re ready or not.
Words: 1177, Chapters: 1/1, Language: English
This one was inspired by @kusnilive mentioning something about Blake seeing Yang playing with her bottle cap that was found in the latest DC issue.
“Hi. Could I get a green mint tea with honey instead of sugar, one black coffee with no sweetener and two… ah!” Blake bit back a light laugh when she saw the perfect pastry for her and Yang. “Two bumblebee buns, please?”
“Sure, that’ll be 15 lien. We’ll bring it to your table.”
Blake bit back a rather unattractive snort. It was a testament to how much Yang had influenced her sense of humour that she picked up on potential puns like her white clothes picked up her black ear fur. Suffice to say… it was a lot.
She made her way over to the table that Yang had grabbed and smiled at her softly as she sat down. Yang grinned back and winked playfully as she twirled a… bottle cap around her fingers?
“What have you got there?” Blake asked curiously. A strange sensation settled in her chest. It wasn’t anxiety. But it certainly demanded to be heard. It was almost similar to the first time that she had thought of Yang as home.
“Hmm? Oh… uh… heh…” Yang laughed awkwardly, her cheeks blushing prettily as her free hand rubbed the back of her neck. “It’s just a bottle cap that I found when I was travelling. The ocean washed it up onto the shore of Patch’s harbour. It’s stupid, really. I don’t know why I kept it.”
“Th- the ocean?” She murmured distantly. The sensation in her chest pulsed, slamming against her ribs as she stared at Yang for a moment, her throat suddenly dry. It was impossible. The chances of it winding up in Patch after Blake threw it into the middle of the ocean were little to none! It couldn’t be… unless…? “May I…?” Blake asked, straining to keep her voice even.
“Uh… sure, Blake.” Yang handed the cap over with a sheepish smile. “But its just a cap.”
Blake examined it carefully and immediately recognised it. It belonged to a bottle of Sunflower Pop. She inhaled slowly and turned it over in her hands, seeing the familiar dent in one side. She knew exactly what, or rather who, it was from. She had looked at it often enough. She had pulled it out and held it close until she couldn’t bare to anymore. She had seen the exact spot that Yang had punched to knock the cap in hopes of impressing her. Against all odds… it had found its way back.
“Heh.” She laughed to herself softly, blinking back tears and biting her lip, shaking her head. “You know… they say that if you love something, you should let it go. If it’s meant to be, it’ll find its way back to you one day.”
“Blake? Wha- what do you mean? I just kept it becau-“
“Because it reminded you of when you took me to that saloon, right?” Blake interjected with a small smile. “So did I. This exact bottle cap, to be precise.”
“What?” Yang stared at her in disbelief for a moment.
“I kept the cap you punched off. It, um. It became a sort of… important momento for me, so to speak.” Blake said softly, her thumb gently rubbing the steep cap. “When I was aboard the ship to Menagerie, I wasn’t in a good place. I didn’t believe that I deserved happiness or love. I wasn’t worthy of kindness or of holding onto something that connected me to you. So… I tried to… sever that connection. I threw the cap into the ocean during one of my darker days.” Blake swallowed thickly and reached out her free hand and curled around Yang’s metal one, squeezing firmly as she looking into her eyes. “But I guess you could say that it didn’t work. You were always there. I couldn’t break that connection to you. I don’t think I ever really wanted to. And apparently…” Blake smiled shakily and held up the cap in between them. “The universe agrees.”
“But… how?!” Yang’s whispered, her voice trembling as much as Blake’s. There was no longer doubt or disbelief in her eyes. How could there be when it was entirely too coincidental to be anything else? “How is that even possible?”
“Do you believe in destiny?” Blake asked softly as Yang curled her left hand around Blake hand that held the cap.
“I- yeah… why?”
“Because I think that you might be mine, Yang Xiao Long.”
There was a long pause before Yang spoke up, her voice thick with emotion and her eyes glistening with unshed tears.
“I think that you might be mine too, Blake Belladonna.”
Hoy, dollinks. Against all odds, I exist. Even more curiously, I seem to be climbing my way out of the pit that was last year. Here, have a new Unreliable Narrators by way of celebration.
You will do nicely.
Trelawney Thorpe eyed the Baron with deep distrust. Gil deserved better than this, of that she had very little doubt. Still, orders were orders, no matter how distasteful she found them. In this case, colluding with the Baron in order to further Her Majesty’s interests made Trelawney feel a little like she had eaten live squid—queasy and a little squirmy inside. In all of the Baron’s great concern for Gil, he never seemed to stop and ask what was actually good for him, did he?
“Right,” she said, “what about Prince Sturmvoraus?”
About a fanfic that I read called good food, good friends, bad laughs.
Lool this is old, I stole it from my deviantart XD just put it here so you can see it XD and if you like frans you sure are gonna love that fanfic, it’s really good stuff!
I am working on the fransweek and some chalastor drawins, see you!! Ooxox
I couldn’t help but to create another character for my fanfiction. So let me introduce her : Amaryllis Blue.
She’s a Huntress, follpwing Ironwood’s orders. And once he said something, Well… You better not try to stop her for doing it. She often repeat that no matter the feelings, she has to do everything to complete a mission. What she didn’t expect… Was it’s actually her own feelings which make her doing everything for Ironwood.
Well, still in developement lol.
Jackson didn’t know where he was running to but he sure as hell knew what he was running from. He dashed through the familiar hallways of the dorm, racing down the stairs with tears obscuring his vision, and ran to the only quiet space in the entirety of the building: the first floor.
The first floor of their dorm is made up of single rooms and a central living room located in front of the entrance/exit of their dorm. It was usually packed with people either trying to get their studying done or with people waiting for the arrival of their friends. However, after the dorms were put on lock down and nobody was allowed in or out, the once populous living room became still and quiet with most of the light stemming from cracks between the hastily taped up blockades of old cardboard and newspapers.
With the area the school was located in, the dorms were fitted with bulletproof windows even before the villains arrived, since Chicago was known for its high gun violence statistics. But even this coincidental layer of protection didn’t make the students feel safer. Most of the people living in singles decided to move into their friends dorms on the upper levels after a couple of scary incidences where outsiders were found peeking into the windows. Anybody found walking outside at this time was assumed to be either a criminal or associated with a group of bandits, eager to scout out their next looting area. So far, no outsider has had any luck in their quest to break into the building, but nobody on the inside was willing to take any chances.After the first couple of incidences, students took it upon themselves to block out the windows and barricade all entryways with as many desks, chairs and other big, miscellaneous furniture items they could find, making the first floor seem like the aftermath of a zombie apocalypse: abandoned, dark, and just a tiny bit eerie.
Jackson usually hated the quietness of the first floor, the silence too suffocating for his extroverted personality to handle. However, given the circumstances, Jackson knew that the first floor would be the last place anyone (read: Mark) would look for him. Everyone was creeped out by the first floor, even during the daytime, and it was an unspoken agreement that nobody would venture down there at night… But here Jackson was. On the first floor…. Late at night…
The dimly lit hallways made it almost impossible for Jackson to see where he was going as he stumbled in a random direction down one of the hallways. There were random papers and an assortment of diverse objects strewn around the floor, perhaps from the aftermath of one of Jackson’s attempts at a party during the first day. Even though Jackson’s sneaker clad feet would be mostly impervious to any sharp object that was haphazardly left lying around, he still made sure to lightly step around any object he encountered. His subconscious reasoned that if he broke something important, the owner would feel just as crushed as he was at the moment.
The further Jackson walked down the hall, the colder it got. The heat was turned off on the first floor to save electricity and with every step Jackson could almost feel the heat leaving his body. As his tears dried and his emotions settled down, the fencer felt a mixture of shame and anger take over. Shame because of the cowardly way he ran out and anger at Mark putting him in such an uncomfortable position in the first place. It’s not like this whole thing was Jackson’s idea! He was mostly against the entire plan from the beginning!
The villains were the ones who always put everyone in danger, no matter how the battles always seemed to draw the fight away from the general public. Even if they were being conscientious about the level of destruction they caused, it didn’t excuse the pain they inflicted on Mark during each fight. Jackson was the one who was always kidnapped, yes, but his injuries were - for the most part - superficial. His ego was the part of himself that took the biggest hit after every kidnapping, especially during some of the more ridiculous situations that caused Jackson to question how he had ever let himself play the role of the helpless princess in the first place.
After he was saved, or during some of the rarer times he escaped, Jackson took it upon himself to always be the one to pick Mark back up, clean the hero’s wounds, take care of him, and help him recover enough to get back on his feet. Jackson acted as Mark’s personal nurse and was always the first to see how severe Mark’s wounds were; Jackson even took some basic first aid and beginner EMT training at a nearby community college in order to help after the more arduous battles Mark had. With Mark’s super healing, there were never any scars left from the fights. Even so, sometimes all Jackson could see when he looked at Mark was the memory of all of the lacerations, bruises, and cuts Mark had to endure to protect him and the city. It just wasn’t right.
Jackson shook his head and kept walking forward, trying to push those thoughts away. He had faith in Mark, and he could see how there might be more to the villains that what they currently see. However, it was hard to keep acting like a supportive friend if the person he had to put his trust in was acting like a complete idiot! Jackson wasn’t blind! He could see how the dorm lock down affected Mark, and he knew his best friend was just torturing himself when he tuned in to see the news every night. On more than one occasion, Jackson had seen Mark’s hands glow a faint red as they listened to a particularly bad news report. He faintly remembered Mark explaining that his body generated more energy than a regular human, and that if he wasn’t able to burn off the excess energy somehow, his powers would get even harder to control. He had never seen it for himself, however, until he was being indirectly threatened with it during their argument.
Mark’s abilities never induced an ounce of fear in Jackson. While it was a little weird to know that Mark was infinitely stronger than him (even though Mark was built like a twig), and could even kill Jackson using only a single pinky, the thought of fleeing from the danger Mark’s gift potentially brought never once crossed Jackson’s mind. Mark never used his powers unless he was forced to, and Jackson knew that if there ever was a time Mark was coerced to use his powers on Jackson, it would be in a life or death situation. Even then Jackson doubted Mark would be able to cause him any harm. But being forced against the bed frame, watching the anger and hurt play out in Mark’s eyes as he screamed at Jackson, and feeling the slight pinpricks of heat against his hips… that was the only moment Jackson had ever felt scared of his best friend.
A sudden shiver wracked his body, drawing Jackson out of his troublesome thoughts. Still clad in only a thin, black T-shirt and ripped, dark-wash jeans did nothing to prevent the cold from seeping in. As goosebumps prickled up and down his arms, his hair standing on end, Jackson elected to put on the sweater he had hastily grabbed from his closet. Loosening his unconscious death grip of said item, Jackson swore under his breath as he held up the black fabric with both hands.
Just his luck that he grabbed the ONE sweater that inadvertently caused some of the problems in his life! This was the sweater he wore to Bambam’s stupid pre-midterm party; a gag gift that Mark bought him that Jackson KNEW Mark only bought with the assumption Jackson would never wear it (so of course, Jackson put it on and proudly flaunted it the very next day). THIS was the sweater that sparked the conversation between him and his then-acquaintance/classmate Yugyeom, the sweater that Jackson may have gotten a bit too tipsy in, the sweater that provided a layer of restraint by preventing skin-to-skin contact with the admittedly handsome, young dancer as they became closer and closer throughout that night.
This was the sweater that ended up on the floor as Jackson’s allowed the other to become more than an acquaintance…
“AAAaaaaaaAH!” Jackson softly yelled, squeezing his eyes shut and throwing the sweatshirt on over his head, embarrassment curling low in his gut as he tried to push down the memory of that night. He still couldn’t believe that he allowed that night to happen! While he doesn’t want to admit that Mark may have been right in that he was emotionally compromised in the weeks following Mark’s rejection of Jackson’s confused feelings for the older (who hasn’t had a crush on their best friend, right?!) that still wasn’t to blame for the past couple of days where Yugyeom and Jackson became even closer and more… intimate… than expected.
Softly hitting his head and willing the confused emotions swirling around inside to quiet down, Jackson continued on his path and decided to ignore whatever problems he may come to have with the acquaintance-turned-lover-turned-(friend?) and focus on his current predicament which was…. Where in the hell is he?
“Oh crap… I must’ve been walking for longer than I expected because I have no idea what hallway I’m in.” Jackson thought to himself as he stumbled around the corner and into a dead end that only had a single door at the end of the hall.
“You’ve gotta be kidding me… Seriously?!” Jackson grumbled to himself, looking at the suspicious looking door with trepidation as the hallway light flickered above him “This is seriously like a terrible horror movie!”
Jackson was afraid of basically… everything. He was terrified of horror movies, roller coasters, spiders, bugs… basically anything adrenaline inducing that wasn’t high-intensity situations like a fight or athletics. Even so, at this moment Jackson was cold, miserable and still desperate to get away from the awkward situation that would no doubt be waiting for him if he turned around now. So with a clenched jaw and a spike of determination welling up, Jackson stomped towards the unsettling door and quickly turned and yanked the door handle open to reveal an…
Unkempt Janitor’s closet.
With a sigh of relief, Jackson’s shoulders slumped down from the rigid posture he unknowingly assumed as the fear ebbed away. With only a mop, a rack of cleaning products, and an overturned bucket at the center of the small closet, Jackson found relief as he realized that he had stumbled upon the perfect hiding place for the time being. Just in time, too, as the faint yelling of his name from the same hallway he had traversed moments earlier ricocheted off of the bare walls.
“Jackson! Hey, are you down here?”
With a jolt, Jackson recognized Mark’s faint voice as the latter kept calling out to him… from the first floor!
“How did he find me so quickly?!” This panicked thought spiked a sense of urgency in Jackson as the fencer quickly dove into the closet and shut the door behind him, realizing a second too late he used way too much force. With a sinking feeling in his chest, Jackson could only listen as the slamming of the door reverberated down the empty hallway, no doubt alerting Mark to his presence on the same floor.
“Jackson? Is that you?”
Mark’s yell became even louder, his footsteps increasing in sound as Jackson listened to the other jog down the same path. Frantically, Jackson felt around the now darkened closet for a place to hide, anxiety clawing at his throat. He wasn’t ready for ANY conversation about feelings yet, whether it had to do with his and Mark’s relationship, with Mark’s feelings, or even worse; his… affiliation with Yugyeom when he didn’t even know what it was yet, other than a mutual physical relationship during a tough time…
“Damn Mark! That bastard was right that I’m basically allergic to any emotional talk … crap!”
Deciding to deal with that little tidbit of information on another day, Jackson began searching the inside of his self-imposed hideaway for a light or a good place to hide.
Feeling the desperation grow, Jackson quickly whirled around to face the back of the closet, forgetting that the mop bucket was right behind his feet. As Jackson stepped forward, his foot caught against the bucket’s handle effectively causing Jackson to trip and fly forwards. His arms blindly reached out in front of him in order to try and catch himself against something, anything, to stop his fall. His left hand found the back wall first, his shoulder following not soon after in an awkward brace against the wall in an effort to catch his bodyweight, his right arm hitting the mop and knocking it over as he flailed around. Before he could even begin to recover, Jackson heard a faint *click* sound as the mop caught against some sort of switch in the darkness.
As Jackson was in an awkward “lunge” position with his left shoulder holding most of his weight balanced over the upturned bucket, the mop knocking down everything on its way to the floor, Jackson hoped that the hilarity of the situation would distract Mark enough to ignore their inevitable conversation just enough for him to escape again.
What he didn’t expect was for the section of the wall in which he was supporting himself against to collapse outwards, causing Jackson to shriek and fall forwards with it. Jackson’s reflexes kicked in quickly enough and he ended up rolling out with the fall, his left shoulder flaring ad making him wince with pain as he rolled into a kneeling position onto the soft, cold grass outside.
Jackson’s eyes widened as he realized he wasn’t inside the building anymore. In fact, he wasn’t even inside any building anymore! He was outside, kneeling on cold grass in moderate pain from the crash against the solid wall and subsequent unprepared, forced roll out when that once solid wall fell open… revealing the crisp October fresh air.
Stunned, Jackson slowly stood up, rolling out his shoulder in an effort to analyze his pain level. He turned around to look at the dark lake and the night sky, feeling the soft wind curl through his hair. He was so shocked at this sudden turn of events that he didn’t even realize the wall was moving yet again behind him.
In his periphery, he saw the wall rise up once more, slowly … closing…shut….
Jackson jerked back around to face the mystery door and helplessly watched as his only means of entering the building was once again sealed up.
“No! Nonononononononononononono noNONONONO!” Jackson yelled, running back towards the wall and frantically running his fingers along the outer layer in an effort to find a way to reopen it, ignoring the faint burning of his bruised shoulder. The brick wall, however, gave no indication of ever reopening. Even as Jackson continuously ran his fingers along the outer edge of where he thought that the door might have been, his probing fingers felt no seal or even slight indentation of a switch or a button he could press to reenter the building.
After five minutes of desperate searching, Jackson sighed and let his hands fall to his side, leveling a blank stare at the now unassuming wall. “Just my luck…. I found an Indiana Jones secret tunnel by accident and now I’m locked out like a teenager who missed curfew… Just great!”
With a sigh and one last frustrated bang against the wall with his good hand, Jackson turned away from the building and started walking along the grass back towards where he thought his room would be. Since his hoodie had no pockets and he wasn’t able to grab his phone in the escape, Jackson had no way of contacting friends to return back into the building. Even if he did, he knew Mark would be furious in the “I’m your best friend, I’m supposed to keep you safe!” kind of way. Even though they were still in the middle of an argument, Jackson knew that Mark would drop everything in order to help Jackson. Logically, it would make sense for him to seek out Mark since the guy could just swoop down and fly him back up to their shared lodging.
On the flip side, Jackson didn’t know if he was ready to accept Mark’s help again so soon after Mark complained about always having to swoop in and rescue him…
Which left only one other person that Jackson could ask… Even if that meant creating more of a divide between him and Mark if the latter were to find out.
The shivers that suddenly overtook Jackson’s body made the decision for him.
“If I could figure out where my room is, I could find Yugyeom’s room and throw things against the window until answers and helps me in.Worse comes to worse, I’ll just give in and get Mark… ”
With a sigh, Jackson began trudging towards the direction that he thought he came from, already knowing that he would get a lecture about safety from either one of the guys he was willing to ask for help.
Unbeknownst to Jackson at the time, he would not make it back to his dorm room that night as a pair of eyes curiously tracked the Chinese male’s slouched form from the shadows.
Mark heard a slamming door coming from the hallway ahead of him as he jogged through the abandoned first floor. He didn’t realistically expect Jackson to step anywhere near the first floor, but with the harsh words Mark said and the hurt he saw in Jackson’s eyes, he knew that Jackson would go anywhere in order to get away from him. However, Mark hoped that Jackson wouldn’t find himself in a precarious situation due to Mark’s moment of weakness.
“Jackson! Are you over there?” Mark called out, pushing himself to run even faster in order to catch his best friend, to apologize profusely and reconcile their relationship. Instead of a call back, Mark heard a jarring crash from up ahead. Worry settled in the pit of his stomach and Mark began sprinting down the dimly lit hallway, not caring about the crunches beneath his sneakers as he sped over abandoned memorabilia on his way to where he thought Jackson was.
Mark skirted around the last corner and was met with a single doorway at the end of his path. Quickly, Mark threw himself towards the single door, opening it and shoving the door wide open. Surprise colored his face as the faint light from the hallway illuminated only an overturned bucket, a fallen mop and a scattering of various cleaning supplies all over the floor with the cabinet that they must’ve been on collapsed against the wall. Disappointment at finding only inanimate objects inside the last open room filled Mark, who shrugged off the interesting scene before him as he slowly closed the door.
“We must be getting rats in the building…” Mark thought to himself as he turned away from the door (and his best friend, who was at that time pounding against the side and begging to be let in).
A feeling of unease washed over Mark as he walked away, as if something was pushing him to turn back and figure out the scene behind it. Instead, Mark chalked it up to his powers acting out again and ran back towards the central dorm, still looking forwards for Jackson and not knowing he left him behind.
A/N: Sorry about the wait! For whatever reason, I had a REALLY hard time finishing this chapter. I was going to do a flashback of Bambam’s party and I LITERALLY have so many pages of my starting to write it, changing my mind but keeping the writing in case I want to use it and then COMPLETELY starting a new one… Does anybody else do that or am I the only one with MULTIPLE pages of various tidbits of writing that I created for this story but didn’t use because *flow* but kept because they seem alright?!
Maybe when I’m done with the story I’ll upload some of them.
Next chapter is planned, I just need to write it. Even though I haven’t posted much for this story, I’ve been thinking about writing a Jackbum one-shot that I’ve had on my mind so the next update will either be within the week or …. sometime… later? IDK
ALSO, last time I said I’d have Jinyoung’s origin story up and ready… and I do! I just don’t know where to put it. I may end up replacing that interlude part of the story with Jinyoung’s origin story because I sorta like the idea of their origin stories mixed in with the present day telling. Then, as we introduce characters and get to know them, we can have their background at the forefront of our minds? Is that crazy…?
Otherwise, TUMBLR is getting a heck ton of tidbits and origin stories in the near future!
NEXT UP: Who’s following Jackson? What’s Mark going to do when he realizes his best friend is in danger (again)? Where are JB and Jinyoung in all of this? All this (and maybe bambam and yugyeom again) in the next update!
“Tim, do you want to bring Kon?”
“I care way too much about Kon to subject him to the torture of a Gotham high society fundraising gala.”
-Crooked Arrows Flown True (by Ionaperidot)
Eddie leaned back against the pillows, and when Richie pulled back, he was taken aback by how beautiful he looked. He was flushed, his pupils were blown, and he was already breathing heavily. Richie honestly had no idea how he had gone this long without kissing him.
taglist: @vanity190 @dyoxyys @jon-is-my-lord @rebecca-the-queen @sunxcherries @beepbeep-motherfucker @gloire-celeste @loserslibrary @photoboothreddie @icecreamcatt @richiestoeshurt @eddietczier @that-weird-girls-blog @kissrichie
“Good evening everyone. Happy Friday! The time is now 7:00 pm and we will begin with the daily announcements.
It has now officially been a week since Project J and Dark Soul seized command of the Chicagoland area. With their cunning skills and extraordinary foresight, our supreme leaders were finally able to deceive and eviscerate the menace that was Red Dragon. As per their orders, all facilities that were previously run by the incapable city government will henceforth be seized and shut down as our overlords remake the city into something that we can all be proud of. Schools will be shut down in order for the new curriculum to be set up. The boundaries of the city are still closed off and guarded by the robots, built and created by the genius Project J. This technological protege is continuing to uphold the outside communication ban, but has been merciful enough to grant us the ability to keep our Chicago radio stations and news broadcast so that we may keep up to date on the whereabouts, new policies, and warnings from our saviors. In turn, Dark Soul has also provided us with the working electricity we need to power everything from water purification systems to charging our phones. For these things, and many others, we thank our new leaders.
In other news, people are advised to stay inside for their own protection as Dark Soul and Project J supporters seize various properties. These groups will soon become the protectors, leaders, and givers of the communities they possess, as promised. Soon enough, the city that was once a corrupt mass of incompitent city officials will become a new utopia that all Chicagoans can enjoy equally.
There have bee-”
Mark Tuan sighed and turned the TV off, slumping even further down into the soft, well-worn beige couch. He threw the remote carelessly to the side, not even blinking as the remote came apart (again), sending the protective cap and batteries flying in all directions. He grabbed his hood and flipped it over his face, pulling the strings until all you could see was his nose peeking out from inside the bright orange hoodie. Collapsing sideways onto the couch, Mark let himself sprawl out completely as he let himself regret his most recent life choices.
Mark blindly reached behind himself, searching for the comfortable “stress-blanket” that he and Jackson bought on a whim years before. The blanket was made of a fleece-like, pale blue material and had a cute, cartoon-ish koala bear eating bamboo on it with big, soft pink bubble letters underneath exclaiming “You’re more than koala-fied!”. Jackson said the blanket made him feel validated from the instant he saw it. Mark just agreed because he thought the Koala looked sort of cute.
Once his hand felt the familiar material, wedged inside of the couch, he gave a strong tug and freed the blanket from in between the cushions. He immediately covered his entire body by curling up into a ball underneath and finally let out a yell of frustration he had been pushing down for the past couple of days. Holding his knees against his chest, Mark started to think about the repercussions of his “heat of the moment” decision to let the villains have control of the city.
In all honesty, he expected his plan to go a hell of a lot better. Mark always had a weird, niggling feeling in his gut every time he fought against his “arch-rivals”. During every battle, Mark always noticed that they fought in areas away from crowded parts of the city, like over the water or in large parks. There were usually very little casualties or injuries to civilians, and even when the villains kidnapped Jackson, it was never done maliciously or with the intent to harm. At first, Mark attributed that to his own superhero abilities, using his power responsibly in a way that protected the civilians and his best friend from all harm. But if he thought about it, it was usually the villains who chose the battleground and Mark would just meet their challenge head on, no matter the location. The latest battle went against the norm, which Mark noticed a little while later than he should of, and his gut instinctively told him something was off about the entire thing.
While he was “trapped”in the Planetarium, Mark had some time to think about what all of these collected data points meant. Even while Project J was threatening to obliterate the hero, Mark thought it still felt… wrong somehow. Project J and Dark Soul had to have known that by telling Mark their plan, they were giving Mark enough time to escape. After a cursory glance to his surroundings, he noticed that there was literally nothing keeping him trapped in the place. Project J’s bots were probably nearby, but Mark’s fire had melted them once before and he knew he could do it again if he wanted to.
At that moment, Mark decided to try his riskiest plan yet. He was tired of fighting, tired of going home with bruises and lacerations. The villains never seemed to take it easy on him, and he was tired of being the punching bag all the time. He was especially done with seeing Jackson kidnapped every week. Jackson was his best friend, his bro for life, and even though he had never really been hurt before, the image of Jackson’s bruised and bloody face would be an image Mark would be seeing every time he closed his eyes. He wouldn’t let his friend be hurt any more because of him, even if it might not have been intentional.
He had logical reasoning on his side, too; If the villains were truly evil, and if they had no hero to stop them, they would do what they have always claimed to do and mercilessly take over the city for power and wealth. If this was the case, Mark’s “sudden death” could be reversed, and he’d take them down once and for all. He’d finally put a stop to everything.
But something in his gut told him that this wouldn’t be the case.
So he made a quick decision, pretended to be dead, and had a tearful reunion with his best friend, filling Jackson in on all of the details. Mark could tell Jackson didn’t fully agree with him, still scarred with the front-row view of Mark’s death at the hands of the villains, but he gave his support nonetheless and didn’t argue with Mark’s reasoning.
Now, a week later, Mark wish Jackson would have smacked some sense into him.
Usually, at this time of day, the two friends could be found either celebrating Jackson’s latest win or out exploring the city. Ever since the villains took over the city, however, JYP International Prep decided it was in the students’ best interest to remain indoors in their dorms until it was deemed” safe to leave”. All classes, extracurriculars and athletics were canceled along with every other school in the area, for an undetermined amount of time. It had only taken three days for the two boys to become bored out of their minds.
In the beginning, they hung out with their floor mates and tried to pass the time by playing games, throwing parties, or even cleaning. Since outside communications were banned, cell phones stopped working and access to social media was denied. The students could still send messages to one another but not to anyone outside the Chicagoland area. In a fit of boredom, each student tried their best to prank call one another. That didn’t last long.
After the third day, students began to give up on finding any kind of stimulating activity to partake in and started staying in their rooms more and more often.
Which leads us to today. The seventh day.
Jackson Wang and Mark Tuan were roommates their freshman year at JYP International, and have kept up the tradition ever since. With two high-ride beds on opposite walls, a single window on the far end, dresser drawers under each bed and a desk located at the foot of each bed, their room looked like a typical dorm room that you could find at any American school. That’s where the resemblance ends, however, as the two roommates were anything but ordinary. With Mark coming from a wealthy family, he had the money and the resources to make their room as unique as possible. For starters, a flatscreen TV was hung up right over the doorway of their room, with video game consoles connected to the media center placed haphazardly in the corner of their room. Their room was one of the few that were located on the third floor of the dorm, which gave them extra ceiling height and access to the roof through their window.
Mark’s side of the room was filled with different musical artists he admired as well as a few newspaper clippings of the funnier rescues he’s had to do with Jackson (the picture of Jackson covered in glue and feathers with Mark in full costume holding Jackson in a bridal carry was probably Mark’s favorite). His closet consisted of his favorite clothing items, ranging from Target to designer, all ordered and put away nicely.
Jackson’s side of the room was more vibrant than Mark’s minimalistic, neat style. He hung up pictures of cars, artists, Pokemon cards he somehow always found, movie ticket stubs, flyers of events he participated in, polaroids of his friends and family, and anything else that he deemed “important”. His bed contained multiple plushies, all gifts from his “friends”, and about four different kinds of pillows from when he couldn’t decide which one was fluffier (then subsequently forgot to return when he found his answer). His desk proudly displayed the multiple trophies, ribbons, and prizes he had won in various fencing competitions, with homework and other papers caught up in the fray. His closet contained a lot more workout-type materials than Mark’s as well as a box of snapbacks during his “wild-and-sexy” phase.
They had enough in their rooms to have been theoretically entertained for weeks. But Mark, being an enhanced being, could feel himself starting to become stir crazy. Using his powers usually helped him work off the excess energy his body created, but since no one was allowed outside and Red Dragon was dead, Mark had no way to relieve his energy. All he could do was watch TV and see how miserably his plan has been going so far.
Jackson tried to help cheer him up at the beginning, forcing him to walk around and join him in various activities with his friends. But Jackson’s personality also demanded that he help others and alleviate their concerns about the takeover as well. So instead of getting Jackson all to himself, Mark had to share him with all of the other students in their dorm as Jackson did his best to provide a positive atmosphere in the otherwise dreary city.
The rational part of Mark’s brain was overwhelmingly proud to be called Jackson’s best friend; only a true-hearted, kind person would be able to put other’s well-being in front of their own to provide some semblance of normalcy as the world around them fell apart. Mark was grateful for Jackson’s unwavering support, never making him feel guilty or demanding he step up as they watched the city descend into hell. Mark knew that Jackson trusted him unconditionally and his loyalty meant more to Mark than anything else in the universe.
However, Mark was human. Meaning he was also extremely jealous and angry that Jackson’s time wasn’t fully devoted towards helping Mark figure out their current problem. Mark reasoned that, now that Jackson knew what the plan was, he should at least bare some responsibility into figuring out when their little experiment should be put to an end.
He also knew that Jackson was also spending more time with Yugyeom , which left Mark feeling out-of-place and (he hated to admit it) lonely. As Jackson’s best friend, shouldn’t he get more time with the other than Yugyeom, some one-night-stand with no prior history with Jackson?!
Before he could further spiral into a pit of self-deprecation, the blanket was snatched away from him. Knowing that Jackson was the only person that could be in their shared dorm, Mark just turned to face towards the couch, content to ignore his best friend.
“Man, you look like a hermit. That sweatpants-hoodie outfit you’ve got going on screams I’ve given up on everything .”
Mark knew Jackson was right, but he preferred not to inflate the other’s ego more than he had to. Instead, he just shrugged and tried to make himself become one with the couch.
Mark could feel Jackson still standing over him on his place on the couch and reluctantly turned onto his back, loosening the hood a little so he could peek out at his roommate. Upon seeing Jackson’s determined glare, he knew that he would be receiving another one of Jackson’s lectures and tried to roll back. Before he could get far, he felt Jackson grab his arm and roughly tug him up into a seated position, the hoodie unceremoniously yanked off of his face with Jackson’s other hand. A little shocked at Jackson’s forceful move, but not willing to let himself be manhandled, Mark yanked his arm from Jackson’s grip and stood toe to toe with the other male, feeling his irrational anger and jealousy uncontrollably rise with each passing second.
“Jackson, what the hell was that for?!” Even though Mark was only three inches taller than the other, he used the height in his favor to tower over Jackson in an attempt to make the other relent.
Jackson stood up straight and met Mark’s fierce glower evenly, apparently not perturbed by the size different. “You’re wallowing in your own misery again, Mark. It isn’t a good look for a newly retired superhero.”
Mark scoffed and glanced away,not willing to meet his friend’s eyes because of how accurate the description was. Shoving his hands into his sweatpants pockets, Mark tried to project an uncaring attitude to protect himself from Jackson’s searching looks. “I am not retired, I am undercover. I was not wallowing in my own misery, I was just frustrated by having been abandoned by my closest friend since he apparently believes that his relationship with Yugyeom is more important than ours.”
Mark felt a pang of regret as he saw the hurt flare up in Jackson’s eyes but the need to lash out was stronger than the need to comfort his friend in that moment.
Similarly, Jackson saw the uncertainty and agony clearly displayed in Mark’s expression. When he walked into the room, the image of Mark’s unmoving form underneath their stress blanket provided a clear indication of Mark’s mental state. Jackson had to sit by and watch as Mark scoured the news reports daily in order to find any truth to his hypothesis about the villains. However, with each passing day the crime rates skyrocketed and the villains gave no indication that they were anything other than pure evil, causing Mark to slowly lose hope and submit to the self-imposed guilt that his fake death caused. Jackson hated to see his friend in such a state and while he might not fully agree with Mark’s idea, he had to give his friend credit; Mark’s intuition was usually right and, being the greatest bestie in the world, Jackson did his best to push aside his ill-feelings towards the villains that almost killed his best friend in order to become Mark’s personal cheerleader and support system. Even if Mark didn’t necessarily see it that way.
With all this in mind, Jackson took a deep, calming breath and pushed down his own desire to put Mark in his place. Taking a slow, steady breath, Jackson continued in a tone that he hoped was even and calm.
“You know fully well that our friendship means more to me than the world itself. We’ve just been cramped up in the dorm for a while and I thought that you might want some space so I went to try and see how Yugyeom AND Bambam are doing.”
“I never said I wanted space. YOU were the one who ASSUMED that you knew what was best for ME. But you were wrong, AS ALWAYS. I know you just wanted to get away from me, Jackson! I could see it every time you went out to hang out in somebody else’s room. I’m probably not WORTHY enough in your eyes since I’m not your personal bodyguard anymore to save you from whatever STUPID scenario you had gotten yourself caught up in! I mean seriously, who in their right mind allows themselves to be kidnapped EVERY. SINGLE. WEEK?”
Mark’s tone rose with each word, face becoming red with anger with his hands balled into fists at his side. Jackson wrapped his arms around himself unconsciously as he did his best to ignore the hurtful words spewing out of his friend’s mouth and took a step back from the other.
“Mark, you are literally the only person in the world that I think would be worthy enough to have these amazing superpowers. Even if you never got them, I would think you were worthy enough to get to know and become friends with! You’re inspiring, funny, kind and have always been there for me even when I’m not at my best. And I’m trying to do the same for you, right now. I know you feel guilty and struck down because you’re losing hope in your idea, but just give it a couple more days and I’m sure-”
Deep down, Mark knew that Jackson had only the best intentions at heart. If he told anyone else his crazy plan, he knew he would be met with angry individuals demanding that he take action against the villains. But Jackson took Mark’s words in stride and made a noticeable effort to support Mark even though he knew that Jackson would never forgive Dark Soul or Project J for trying to kill him. He loved Jackson like he was his own brother and made a promise to himself that he would protect him with everything he had. Which is why Mark will never forget the look on Jackson’s face when the need to hurt something caused Mark to say this:
“JACKSON! You are the most DIM-WITTED person I know when it comes to ANYTHING even VAGUELY emotional. How can you be sure that my gut-feelings is a SURE THING when you can’t even DISTINGUISH any other feeling out there? I’M not even sure I’m right anymore, which SHOULD tell you that this whole plan was a fluke and that YOU are a complete IDIOT for ever trusting me! Of course, you’ll always support me and follow me, yada yada yada, but can’t you get your OWN life instead of always inserting yourself into MINE? Why don’t you run on back to YUGYEOM. Anybody can see that he wants more than the one night you gave him. Maybe he’ll fuck some feelings into you and boy, has he got A LOT of feelings for you. But you wouldn’t know that now would you? You’ll just string him along and act completely obtuse as the fool throws lovesick glances your way whenever you give him even the SLIGHTEST BIT of attention and only use him for a convenient lay. I know you too, Jackson, and I know that you CRAVE attention and validity and when I couldn’t give it to you, when I REJECTED you all those months ago, you RAN towards whatever source would fill the hole that I LEFT.”
By the end of his whirlwind speech, Mark was almost screaming at Jackson and for a second, he felt a twinge of victory at having shut the other up. The short lived moment was immediately washed away as he noticed the hurt, shock and fear in the other’s eyes. During his blind rage, Mark had unwittingly caged Jackson against his bed, Mark’s hands gripping the bed frame on either sides of Jackson’s waist. Mark quickly released his hold and scrambled back as much as he could to give Jackson his space. To his dismay and utter horror, Mark saw that his hands were glowing a faint red and had turned the wooden bed frame black where he had touched it, the smell of burnt wood rising in the air.
Feeling completely sick with guilt, Mark dropped to his knees and looked up at Jackson with wet eyes. “Oh god… Jackson… I’m so sorry, I didn’t mean it, you know I would never hurt you and there was absolutely NO TRUTH to anything I said!”
Mark saw Jackson starting to completely shut down, his emotional walls going up to protect him from Mark. Desperate to take his words back and get rid of the glazed look in Jackson’s eyes, Mark tentatively reached out to Jackson’s ankle to try and provide a grounding presence before Jackson completely closed off. Before he could even touch the other, Jackson launched himself over Mark’s outstretched hand and sprinted towards the closet, grabbing the first hoodie he saw, and throwing the door open, desperate to escape the hurtful words still ringing in his ears.
“JACKSON! WAIT-” Mark screamed out, but the sound of the slamming door cut off the rest of his sentence, leaving him sprawled out on the floor with his hand outstretched and a sense of loss as he watched one of the most important people in his life run away from him. For a moment, it all felt like a dream. Mark laid down on the couch, accidentally fell asleep and was currently having a nightmare that he’d wake up from any moment. But as he turned to look at Jackson’s bed with the scorch marks deeply imbedded into the wood, he knew that he had royally fucked up.
I don realized I forgot to post this chapter to tumbler…. literally gag me with a spoon I can’t believe I done this….
“That’s not really it, at all, but he doesn’t know how to articulate the actual problem. Especially to Jason, who calls Batman Dad, and talks about Robin like it was a sport he played in high school, instead of the thing that defines him.”
-Crooked Arrows Flown True (by Ionaperidot)
read it on the AO3 at https://ift.tt/2RB49N2
The secret is out, whether they’re ready or not.
Words: 1177, Chapters: 1/1, Language: English
“Jason’s cat wanders over, placing a paw on his knee and making a soft, inquisitive sound. After a moment she hops onto the couch, sniffing at the baby a little before she settles against his leg, using his free hand as a pillow. Well. It looks like he’s trapped here for the foreseeable future. That’s okay—between a sleeping cat and a sleeping baby isn’t a bad place to be.”
-Crooked Arrows Flown True (by Ionaperidot)